How to tie classic knots

A good quality silk tie and a classic knot sets you apart from the crowd
Featured Image: Handmade Silk Tie – Regal Gold by Samuel Windsor

Learn three of the best tie knots in minutes with our simple step-by-step video tutorials.

The Windsor, Half Windsor and Pratt knot are classic styles that when paired with a quality silk tie and freshly ironed shirt will help you stand confidently on every occasion.

Not sure how to choose the right knot for your face shape or collar style? Read our tie knot guide below.

Tie knot comparison

The knot The collar The occasion Face shape
Windsor Spread collar Formal:
• Weddings
• Christenings
• Funerals
Rectangular
Half Windsor Medium spread collar All-purpose knot:
• Job interviews
• Business meetings
• Events
Diamond
Pratt Narrow/ Point collar Less formal:
• Parties
• Work
• Evenings out
Round

How to tie the Windsor knot


Despite it’s royal title, the Windsor knot was never actually worn by the ill-fated Edward VIII, but was created by the public to emulate his preference for wider, thicker knots. To this day, the Windsor is the only tie knot worn by all Royal Air Force personnel, and has even been featured in a Bond novel.

Windsor knot step by step guide

  1. Start with the wide end in your right hand
  2. And the narrow end in your left
  3. Make sure the wider end is longer
  4. Bring the wide end across and over the narrow end
  5. Feed the wide end up through the loop from behind
  6. And back down to the left
  7. Bring the wide end across and behind the narrow end
  8. Check the seam is facing forward
  9. Bring the wide end down through the loop to the right
  10. From right to left, bring the wide end across the front of the knot
  11. Tuck the wide end back up through the loop
  12. Feed the wide end down through the knot, and pull to tighten
  13. To adjust, pull down on the narrow end and move the knot up
  14. Fold your collar down and you’re ready to go

How to tie the Half Windsor knot


The less bulky brother of the Windsor knot, the Half Windsor was created to suit light to medium-weight tie fabric, and produces a knot that’s significantly smaller than the full Windsor. Elegant and versatile, the Half Windsor will take you across most social occasions.

Half Windsor knot step by step guide

  1. Start with the wide end in your right hand
  2. And the narrow end in your left
  3. Make sure the wider end is longer
  4. Bring the wide end across and over the narrow end
  5. Then bring it back across underneath
  6. The wide end should be on your right, with the seam facing forward
  7. Bring the wide end up, over, and back down through the loop
  8. From right to left, bring the wide end across the front of the knot
  9. Pull the wide end back up through the loop
  10. Feed the wide end down through the knot, and pull to tighten
  11. To adjust, pull down on the narrow end and move the knot up
  12. Fold your collar down and you’re ready to go

How to tie the Pratt knot


Also known as The Shelby Knot, The Pratt knot’s origins have been a source of debate for decades. Allegedly invented by Jerry Pratt (an employee of the U.S Chamber of Commerce), the knot became known as ‘the first new knot in over 50 years’ when it became popularised by television anchorman Don Shelby. Considered an unusual knot due to the fact it starts seam-side out, the knot produced is small and suits a pointed collar.

Pratt knot step by step guide

  1. Start with the wider end in your left hand
  2. And the narrow end in your right
  3. Make sure the seam is facing forward
  4. Cross the wide end under the narrow end
  5. Bring the wide end up and tuck it down to make a loop
  6. The wide end should be on the right, with the seam still facing forward
  7. Moving right to left, bring the wide end across the front of the knot
  8. From underneath, tuck wide end back up through the neck loop.
  9. Feed the wide end down through the knot, and pull to tighten
  10. To adjust, pull down on the narrow end and move the knot up
  11. Fold your collar down, and you’re ready to go

What’s your favourite tie style, and what occasion would you wear it too? We’d love to hear from you. Just drop us a line below or via our Facebook page.

Posted in How To Guides.

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